Gettleman went out of his way to pick the former Western Michigan Bronco in the third round of the 2018 NFL Supplemental Draft.
Beal only played six career games up to this point in his career. He missed the entire 2018 season due to a shoulder injury. He missed part of the 2019 season due to a shoulder injury. Now, with the opt-out choice, Sam Beal made a strong decision to opt-out of this season. At the end of the 2020 season, as long as everything goes as planned, he will have missed 36 career games in three seasons. That is more than Evan Engram missed in three years.
Whether a new general manager comes in or Dave Gettleman stays, the Giants will have to make a decision on the young cornerback. In order for both general managers to look good, they will need to pull the plug on the Sam Beal project.
The Career of Sam Beal Up to This Point
On July 11th, newly hired New York Giants general manager Dave Gettleman was given the task to fix the cornerback position. He released veteran Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie to save cap space. With limited options in free agency and limited picks in the NFL Draft, Gettleman signed journeymen B.W. Webb, Curtis Riley, William Gay, and others.
Gettleman drafted Sam Beal in the third round of the 2018 Supplemental Draft. This resulted in the New York Giants forfeiting their third-round pick for the 2019 NFL Draft. Then the Odell Beckham trade happened.
Many expected Beal to impact the team at some point in 2018. Unfortunately, Beal suffered a shoulder injury that planted him on injured reserve for the rest of the season.
The Giants were faulty with depth at cornerback that season. The organization traded former first-round pick Eli Apple to the New Orleans Saints for a 2019 fourth-round pick (traded to select Deandre Baker) and a 2020 seventh-round pick (used to select T.J. Brunson). Janoris Jenkins, B.W. Webb, Tony Lippett, Antonio Hamilton, and Grant Haley remained on the roster as the five cornerbacks.
The next season, the cornerback competition became wide open. Janoris Jenkins remained the only veteran, as B.W. Webb signed with the Cincinnati Bengals. The coaching staff expected Beal to compete with rookies Corey Ballentine, Julian Love, and Deandre Baker.
A lingering hamstring issue caused Beal to be limited in training camp. Therefore, the Giants placed him on injured reserve after roster cutdowns. The Giants made that decision to make sure he was eligible to come back at some point in 2019.
The New York Giants activated Sam Beal from injured reserve on November 5. Beal made his first appearance, mainly on special teams duties in Week 10 against the New York Jets.
Beal rotated in and out of the cornerback position as the season went on, sometimes in the slot and sometimes on the outside. Much like every rookie defensive back in 2019, Beal struggled mightily on defense.
Beal gave up 16 completions on 21 targets (76.2 completion percentage) 171 yards, allowed a 115.4 passer rating, 10.7 yards per completion. One of his major impact plays that season happened when he tackled Miami Dolphins’ running back Patrick Laird in their own end zone for a safety. Eli Manning and the Giants won that game, 36-20.
The COVID-19 pandemic impacted the entire world in 2020. In that case, the NFL gave players the option to opt-out of the season due to fears and health concerns regarding the virus. Sam Beal took advantage of the option and opted-out of the 2019 season, much like many other Giants’ players.
The Time Is Up on Beal
Sam Beal only played six career games up to this point. He is scheduled to miss 42 games in the first three years of his career. His shoulder and hamstring injuries played a part. So did the COVID-19 opt-out. However, the stats were not the greatest in Beal’s six games.
The organization is tired of losing. Whether Dave Gettleman is desperate to keep his job or the Giants cut to the chase and hire a new general manager, they will be eager to find a second cornerback through the draft or free agency.
At that point in time, spending time on a project relating to a Supplemental Draft pick from almost three years ago is a lost cause.